Articles, Branding, CDG

SPRING Capability Development Grant (CDG) Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

First off, we have implemented SPRING CDG for a few clients. 

And there are some questions on Capability Development Grant (CDG) which are bugging our clients.
And we thought it would nice to have them here for all to understand.

What is CDG? 

As the words suggest, Capability Development Grant (CDG) is about developing your company's internal capabilities. Basically, through CDG, we hope we can impart to your people skills sets and bring certain systems and processes to your organisation. We really want to bring your company to the next level. Our focus right now is on the areas of branding and marketing.

How can CDG help me?

You can get funding up to 70% if your project is approved!

How much is the project?

That really depends on the scope of work. Each company is very different in size and makeup.

Are there any guidelines to the project sum?

Yes, there are!

For projects less than S$45k, which means claims of S$30k and below, there is a simplified application process. You need to only answer 5 questions.

For projects more than S$45k, which means claims above S$30k, you need to submit a project proposal. This proposal is in addition to the consultant's proposal. Click here for the CDG Project Proposal Guide.

When does CDG end?

According to Annual Budget 2018, CDG will end 30th September 2018. It will be replaced by Enterprise Development Grant (EDG) which will be administered by a new statutory board called Enterprise Singapore (which is a merger of SPRING and IE).

Am I missing out if I do not apply for CDG assistance? 

Yes you are! So make sure you utilise the scheme to further develop your business capabilities! At present, SPRING's funding support of up to 70% would be effective until 30 September 2018.

Which area should I look into? 

Good question. We are specialists in Branding and believe that this area is paramount to your organisation's future success.

Am I eligible for CDG? 

To be eligible, you are required to

1. Be registered and operating in Singapore

2. Have at least 30% local shareholding

3. Have group annual sales turnover ≤ S$100m or group employment of ≤200 employees.

As you can see, most SMEs would meet these criteria.

So, are Start-ups eligible for CDG?

No, startups will not be eligible for CDG. BUT if you are a startup, you can try for SPRING SEEDS Capital (SSC).

How long does a typical CDG project take? 

Depending on the scope of your project, the timeline could range from 4 to 12 months. This includes time to establish proposed objectives and conduct research. Our typical branding project takes about 6 to 9 months.

Whom should I talk to regarding CDG?

On first base, you can either reach out to certified consultants (like us) or SME Centres.

What do you mean by certified consultants?

From 1 January 2017, if you engage consultants, they need to be certified management consultants
SMEs should ensure that consultants involved in CDG must possess SPRING-recognised certification; failing which SPRING reserves the right not to support the consultancy fees incurred.

Are Firefish consultants certified? 

Yes! Consultants from Firefish are certified and accredited by TÜV SÜD PSB and recognised by SPRING.

Is the application process easy? 

The application process has been simplified. You can easily apply CDG at Singapore Business Grants Portal.

How is the application process like?

We have created a SPRING CDG Walk-through so that you will understand the process better.
Click here to view the entire SPRING CDG Walk-through.

Can you help us fill the application form? 

If you have officially appointed us as your consultant, we are more than happy to advise you. The filling up of the actual forms will have to be done by your side. However, please do take note that in the end, you are accountable for the claim.

What other documents do I require for the application?

The usual suspects. Your company’s latest ACRA profile, last 3 years' audited financial statements and consultant’s proposal.

Is there a minimum employee size?

There is indeed a question on employees size in the application form under Company Profile section. We have not received a clear answer from SPRING. Our experience tells us that it should not be zero. And the project sum must justify the size of the company.

Is there a minimum annual revenue? 

Again, there are questions on annual revenue as well as profit or loss under Company Profile section. Similarly, there is no definite answers from SPRING. And consequentially, the project sum must justify your annual revenue or profit/loss. It is on a case-to-case basis. If you really need a figure, we are making a wild guess of at least S$500k revenue.

How long do I have to wait to know the results of my application? 

There is no fixed timeline. Based on our experience however, you should get a reply from SPRING within 6 to 8 weeks. Sometimes, it can take up to 3 months. Do understand SPRING is running a lean team to handle CDG applications.

Can I start CDG whilst applying for CDG? 

No. SPRING insists that your project cannot commence before your application has been approved. According to SPRING, “Your project can only commence on or after the Project Commencement Date stated in your CDG application.”

What does it mean? 

It means that you should not have already begun on the project before your application has been approved. Neither should you have made payment to service providers or suppliers involved in the project.

Can I claim Productivity Innovation Credit (PIC) together with CDG? 

PIC has officially ended.

Do you help us to do claims?

After you engaged our consultancy services, we will advise you accordingly how to make a claim.

How can Firefish help us with CDG?

We are specialists in branding. Firstly, we will conduct a stock-take on your brand. This means who you are right now and how you are looked upon by your employees and your customers. And then we will work with you on a strategy that aligns with your vision and values. Finally, we will conduct a branding workshop to get buy-in from all your people. In short, we transform your brand for the future.

What are the other key areas that are covered by CDG? 

Besides, Branding and Marketing, other areas include Business Model Transformation, Business Excellence, Standards Adoption, Financial Management, Human Capital Development, Intellectual Property, Enhancing Business Processes for Productivity, Service Excellence and Product Development. As you can see, SPRING tries to cover every possible area of your business and address your business needs.

How many CDG Grants can I apply for in a single financial year?

In theory, there are no restrictions on how many CDG Grants you can apply for in a single financial year. SPRING insists though that you must first complete a CDG project before you embark on your next CDG project. You can only apply for a CDG grant in a specified area once. Meaning to say if you are awarded a Branding and Marketing CDG once, you are no longer eligible for Branding and Marketing CDG. Feel free to try for CDG grants in other developmental areas.

Who is SPRING? 

SPRING Singapore is an agency under the Ministry of Trade and Industry responsible for helping Singapore enterprises grow and building trust in Singapore products and services. However, come Q3 2018, SPRING will merge with IE Singapore to form Enterprise Singapore. Our guess is that the focus for SMEs should be glocal instead of local. And a brand that is international must be in your next strategic move.


Still got a burning question?

CDG is administered by SPRING Singapore.
All information is subjected to change due to changes in government policy.
Claims are subjected to approval by SPRING.
For more information, visit SPRING's CDG page.

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